Belmont Club

Cascades

  • Obama Says U.S. Long-Term Debt Load ‘Unsustainable’ and warns of skyrocketing interest rates . You don’t say?
  • A nine hundred thousand dollar model solar house remains dark, uninhabitable, its pipes frozen and burst. “Seven months ago, officials gathered for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the $900,000 house owned by the city of Troy that was to be used as an educational tool and meeting spot. But it never opened to the public. And it remains closed.”
  • GM whacks 1,100 dealers, reports CNN. “GM (GM, Fortune 500) is not yet in bankruptcy court, although CEO Fritz Henderson has said such a filing is “probable.” The company has until the end of the month to win agreement from creditors, unions and dealerships on a turnaround plan. If it fails to do so, the Treasury Department, which has been bankrolling GM’s ongoing losses, has said it will force the company to file for bankruptcy.”
  • Meanwhile, GM may import cars from China. “DETROIT (AP) – As thousands of General Motors workers await word on more U.S. plant closures, reports that the company plans to import Chinese-made vehicles to the U.S. have created a political problem for the automaker and the White House.”
  • As cars come in from China, outrage builds in Canada as orders from across the border are canceled to conform to stimulus rules. “Ordered by Congress to “buy American” when spending money from the $787 billion stimulus package, the town of Peru, Ind., stunned its Canadian supplier by rejecting sewage pumps made outside of Toronto. After a Navy official spotted Canadian pipe fittings in a construction project at Camp Pendleton, Calif., they were hauled out of the ground and replaced with American versions. In recent weeks, other Canadian manufacturers doing business with U.S. state and local governments say they have been besieged with requests to sign affidavits pledging that they will only supply materials made in the USA. “
  • In a related development, Fox News reports that stimulus checks are being mailed to dead people.
  • And the Telegraph reports that “Islamists linked to al-Qaeda on verge of toppling Somali government”.
  • Congress considers Laws That Could Save Journalism.

Meanwhile in Washington, it’s Panetta versus Pelosi. The CIA Director said:

There is a long tradition in Washington of making political hay out of our business. It predates my service with this great institution, and it will be around long after I’m gone. But the political debates about interrogation reached a new decibel level yesterday when the CIA was accused of misleading Congress.

Let me be clear: It is not our policy or practice to mislead Congress. That is against our laws and our values. As the Agency indicated previously in response to Congressional inquiries, our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, describing “the enhanced techniques that had been employed.” Ultimately, it is up to Congress to evaluate all the evidence and reach its own conclusions about what happened.

Now what did he mean by that? Is the US having a run of bad luck or is the accumulated weight of hucksterism, fantasy and deception finally being felt? Who knows. Maybe something will turn up.

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